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Court

Maternal uncle cops 16 years for raping niece

May 21, 2019 11:44 am

A 48-year-old man convicted of raping a student in Labasa two years ago has been sentenced to 16-years imprisonment by the Labasa High court.

The court heard the 15-year-old student had come from Rabi to stay with her maternal uncle and his family in Labasa to attend school after her father passed away.

The victim was a Year 8 student when the accused started to sexually abuse her.

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The abuse continued for nine months until the victim confided in a school friend.

The victim was removed from the care of the accused and was placed in a foster home in Savusavu.

The accused was convicted of four counts of rape and his defense at the trial was that his niece had consensual sex with him.

The victim’s evidence was that she did not report because she was scared that her family will not believe her and the accused had also threatened her.

The High court Judge said that abuse was repeated and prolonged and one of the incidents was witnessed by another child.

The Judge also said that the physical and emotional harm done to the victim are severe and that she now lives in a foster home.

The man has been sentenced to 16-years imprisonment with a fixed term of 11-years before being eligible for parole.

A permanent domestic violence restraining order has also been imposed.

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